Baby Got Way Back

With the incredible super-seriousness of my last post, and the subsequent discussion, I've been wanting to write something light and airy, fresh and clean. Maybe now's the time to recount a story I've been wanting to put into words for a while. It goes way back...

Back when I was a wee lad of just 17 years, I had the opportunity of participating in the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships for high school athletes. The evening after the race, which was in the late morning, we had the honor of a beautiful banquet dinner, awards ceremony, and guest speakers. The main speaker was Olympic gold medalist Al Joyner, who is perhaps better known for being married to Florence Griffith-Joyner, "Flo-Jo", who still holds the 21-year-old 100m world record, and who died only two and a half months before these championships.

Al Joyner had a very good speech prepared, but the biggest moments of the evening for me came when, after we were done with dinner, and done with the awards, a couple of dudes on stilts and dressed like aliens busted in the door just as The Beastie Boys Intergalactic started pumping through the sound system. The aliens were keepin' it real, and getting people out on the dance floor, including Al Joyner. Yes, I've busted a move next to Al Joyner.

We were having fun as kids do, enjoying a little post-race fun with some of the fittest high schoolers in the country, and the DJ just kept the songs coming. Perhaps the DJ wasn't a runner; perhaps he didn't think, but fairly soon, he dropped Sir Mix-a-Lot onto the turntables. I didn't think twice; the song is good, and I like dancing to it. Baby Got Back. But Al Joyner... he knew. In the middle of the song, Mix-a-Lot proudly proclaims, "I keep my women like Flo-Jo."

At this point in the song, I swear on everything that is holy that every single person in the room whipped their head around to look wide-eyed at Al Joyner, and immediately froze. There was that record-skip sound exactly like in the movies. RRrrrrreeeeeeeeeeatt! And we were just staring at him, frozen.

He's a class act, that Al Joyner. He never missed a beat; he clapped his hands together once, with a hearty laugh, and the party continued as if nothing had happened. The music had never stopped, and everything was okay again.

My condolences to Flo-Jo. Sir Mix-a-Lot was indeed paying you a compliment, and Al Joyner knew that. God bless you both.


RM said...

Holy crap - how awkward! What a great story though.

For what it's worth, I don't really care for that song.

THE KRIS said...

best story i've heard in quite some time, thanks.

ryan, you are so wrong to not like the song.

bluntdelivery said...

i regret to inform you that beans and rice DID miss me.

and now a moment of silence for what could have been my ass.

darn you metabolism.

oh, and you need to add the "name/url" option to your commenting. cus i don't fit into either of your options =(


fbg said...

@bluntdelivery: Did you read only the title of this post? :-) And... the changes have been implemented, your majesty. Now any idiot with a keyboard can leave me messages of love.